Jake McClure

Sources include 60th Anniversary commemorative program for the Lea County Fair and Rodeo in 1995, newspaper articles and traditional genealogical sites:

The Jake McClure Arena was constructed under the management of the Lea County Sheriff’s Posse and is dedicated to Jake McClure.

Roy Leonard “Jake” McClure was born November 26, 1902 in Amarillo, Potter County, Texas to Patrick Henry McClure and Cynthia Elizabeth “Lizzie” Birdwell McClure who later moved to Lea County. Jake married the former Kathryn Matthews in 1932.

Jake was described as walking around with a rope in his hand at age 2. He left home at 15 to work as a cowboy and learned the rodeo life under Tom Standifer in Fort Worth, Texas in 1922. He became known for his precision in roping using a small fast loop called “The Jake McClure Loop.”

Jake earned the title of World Championship Calf Roper in 1930. He was named World’s All-Around Cowboy at the Pendleton, Oregon Roundup and Arizona State Champion Cowboy, along with many other honors as a calf roper in the United States, Canada and Europe. Locally, he was president of the first roping club in Lovington. Over the years, Jake worked with many good roping horses including his three favorites, “Legs,” “Snip” and “Silver.” Silver was named World’s Best Calf Roping Horse.

Image credit – Findagrave.com

Jake suffered a severe head injury on his ranch on July 1, 1940 when his horse fell on him. He never regained consciousness and died in a Lovington hospital on July 9, 1940. He is buried in the Lovington Cemetery.

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